The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

Local News

June 3, 2014

In the zone

Land developer seeking change in LindenPointe

HERMITAGE — Frederick A. George has asked Hermitage city officials to change the zoning of three parcels he owns in the LindenPointe business park on South Hermitage Road.

On a parallel track, officials are considering pulling the three properties from a tax-abatement zone.

George is the co-developer of LindenPointe with the city, initially owning about half of the property in the park.

Over the years, he has sold property for development for professional offices, mostly medical offices and clinics.

The city has pursued more technology-related industries for its half of the park.

“They complement each other but kind of have different goals,” said city Director of Planning and Development Marcia A. Hirschmann.

Most of George’s property is in the planned technical park zoning district, while the city’s is primarily in planned technical park-2, a more restrictive zone.

The “most obvious difference” between the two zones is the allowance of professional offices in PTP, she said.

George has asked that parcels of 3.1, 1.9 and 2.9 acres in the PTP-2 zone be added to the PTP zone. In his application for the change, George said he wants to use the property for professional office space. Hirschmann said she does not know of any specific development plans he has for the lots.

One lot is south of the Fresnius Medical Center and north of Prosperity Place, and the other two are east of Campus Circle, across the road from Butler County Community College.

City commissioners introduced an ordinance for the rezoning Wednesday, which sets in motion a lengthy review process before the issue returns to them for a vote.

Hermitage Planning Commission was apprised of the request Monday, but the board will not make a recommendation on the request until July. That will give city officials time to take out a newspaper advertisement alerting residents to the proposal, and send letters to adjoining property owners, Hirschmann said.

The entire PTP-2 zone is in the tax abatement district. City officials specifically said when they created the district that they did not want professional offices to have the option of tax abatements, Hirschmann said.

Commission member Dr. John V. Coupland said he considers the request spot zoning, but Hirschmann said it would not be spot zoning because the properties all abut the PTP zone.

Mercer County Regional Planning Commission will review the proposal, and Hermitage Community and Economic Development Commission will discuss it Thursday.

City commissioners plan to hold a public hearing July 23 and final vote Aug. 27.

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